|Essay type:||Autobiography essays|
|Categories:||United States Violence Terrorism Personal experience|
On the 11th of September, 2001, America experienced one of its most painful moments in history. I was on the night shift crew of firefighters in the South Tower of the building. During that morning, I had woken up, preparing to have breakfast with my family. I had been on the night shift for two weeks, and that would be my last night before resuming the day shift. The news of the first incident was broadcast while having breakfast with my family. The first craft had hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center, in New York. Every channel and internet was live streaming the happenings and everyone was confused, not knowing what to do. My colleague called me from the building, asking me to gather all the other firefighters who worked during the night shift to offer help to the ones on duty that morning. I left my breakfast and rushed to meet the rest who had already assembled. We arrived at the site before the other craft struck the North Tower. People were stuck in the hit building since they could not use elevators and lifts to descend. At first, individuals thought that the happening was due to an accident crash into the building. No one had an idea that we were under attack, and our lives were in danger. We started getting people out of the building on the accessible floors, and the ones on the highest stories would be extracted through the help of choppers and the military. The few that made out of the building were lucky since the construction began collapsing. Many of those who did not make to escape were severely injured. Everyone had put on hold to their businesses to understand the situation taking place at the World Trade Center.
First, the North Tower was severely hit, and before we could comprehend the situation, the South Tower of the same building suffered a major attack that left it in flames. This was when we got to know that the US was under attack from the Islamic extremists, al-Qaeda. From the information going around, there were nineteen of these individuals working together to hijack local airlines. They seized the first craft that crashed into the North Tower. The second attack took place seventeen minutes after the first one. People in the South Tower did not expect the attack, and most of them had remained in the building watching the happenings on the other side of the building (Huddy et al.,pg.455). My colleagues who had gone into the building to get people out were covered in the concrete. Others were stuck on the last floors, and extraction was the only way out. On that day, there were inadequate choppers for removal, and it took a while to get people out. One of the reasons that delayed extraction was the flames coming from the building could ignite a fire in the choppers, and other accidents would have been incurred. The country was in a standstill, and the president had not spoken after the two attacks. It is believed that the president was among the targets and had to be moved to a safe place until safety would be confirmed. The two hits seemed to target the economic breakdown of the US since many businesses suffered.
Moreover, the third plane crashed into the Pentagon military base. The attack took place even before we could offer enough help to victims of the first two attacks. Many people lost their loved ones, while others were damaged for the rest of their lives. A side of the concrete building suffered a significant blow that injured many individuals in the building. Since the military base is the headquarters of defense, this sector had been shaken to the ground, and since everyone was focused on the World Trade Center, there was inadequate help for the soldiers. Firefighters that were in the area did their best to help the victims of the Pentagon attack. According to sources of information, it is believed that the third attack was meant to destabilize the US military so that the state would have inadequate security (Aizpurua et al., pg.380). Due to this, the al-Qaeda would undertake other attacks following the orders of Osama bin Laden without encountering difficulties. The soldiers' effort was to help their fallen soldiers while others were working on the situation at the World Trade Center.
It was not long before we heard of another crash at Shanksville near Pennsylvania. Since the military had ground all flights, the plane failed to take off within the same duration. The craft was under the control of the hijackers as soon as it left. It is believed that the same plane was set to undertake another attack, and the White House was a suspected destination. The news of the attacks had spread all over, and the passengers in the fourth plane got the information (Hong et al., pg.1620). The flight attendants and some passengers battled with the hijackers, and the fight sent the plane crashing in a field. There were no survivors in all the aircraft. The effects of the attacks remain to date because victims suffered the trauma of losing their loved ones. 9/11 will forever remain in the history of the US.
Aizpurua, Eva, et al. "15 years later: Post 9/11 support for increased security and criminalizing Muslims." Journal of Ethnicity in Criminal Justice 15.4 (2017): 372-393.
Hong, Barry A., et al. "Religious and Spiritual Aspects of Disaster Experience Among Survivors of the 9/11 Attacks on New York City’s World Trade Center." Journal of religion and health 58.5 (2019): 1619-1630.
Huddy, Leonie, and Stanley Feldman. "Americans respond politically to 9/11: Understanding the impact of the terrorist attacks and their aftermath." American Psychologist 66.6 (2011): 455.
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